Thursday, June 21, 2012

An Essay From My 13 Year Old Self


This blog hop is hosted by Amy Sonnichsen and Christa Desir.  I decided to do this because, as a teenager, I was a prolific writer.  Much of my writing was overly dramatic and seriously lacked in subtlety.  Then again, what else could you expect of an apprehensive young teenager.

I chose this piece to share because it's characteristic of the things I wrote at age 13. This short essay was actually published in a small magazine, but looking at it now, I can't help but notice its saccharine nature.  I still feel the same way about many things, though I also have a healthy dose of cynicism these days.  I also try to write more elegantly than this now.  Whether I succeed is another matter.


Universe

Sometimes I let my mind wander to distant worlds and new destinies. On my travels over the years, I have learned much about myself that I never knew before.  At times, I feel more comfortable in my fantasy world than I do in the real world, because in my mind, everything in the universe has its place.  No one is alone and no one has doubts about who they are.  They are just fine being themselves and everyone accepts and appreciates their individuality.  No one is cruel or unkind to anyone, no matter how different someone may be. 
This is as the universe should be.  Peace, freedom, and happiness should fill everyone's hearts.  What do you think of when you hear the word "universe"?  Loneliness?  Emptiness?  Cold darkness?  That's what many people seem to think of, but not I.    I think of something else altogether.  I think of unity. 
Now you may ask how the universe could possibly be united when everything is so far apart.  Let's begin by looking at the word itself. "Uni" means one and "verse" can mean a poem or a song.  One song. Doesn't that suggest unity to you?  The word itself suggests that we need to be kinder to one another because we all depend on each other. Like the individual lines of a song, each part of the universe is irreversibly linked to everything else.  If someone or something is destroyed, everyone is permanently affected.  It changes the message of the song completely.  All from the one missing line of the song, the meanings of the other lines are changed, altered forever.  Nothing will ever be the same again, and people like you and me scarcely realize it. 
So you see, everyone and everything is vital to the harmony of the song of life.  When people fight and are full of hate, the beauty and magnificence of the song is lost.  It's crowded out by the muddy, ugly noise of disharmony.  The only way to achieve harmony is to be peaceful and to fill your heart with love.  It's not guns or knives that kill people.  People kill people.  People who are full of hate and care nothing for the value of human life are the ones who destroy the pulchritude and fairness of our home.  Be kind and don't harm others, for we all share a common destiny that is composed of all the destinies of the universe's inhabitants.  These beings are all your neighbors and we should all attempt to be friends.  And even if you meet someone you cannot get along with, why be enemies?  Be tolerant of others and they may be tolerant of you too.  We all need each other. 
So why not try to be pleasant to someone that you are in conflict with? After all, what harm can it do?  Smile at a stranger, and reach out to someone that you don't normally talk to.  Who knows?  You may make a new friend.
What do you think of when you hear the word "universe"?  Please think unity . . .

This is unedited.  It is exactly as it was when I finished it at age 13.  I'm 26 now.  That means I wrote this half a lifetime ago.  At the time, I thought this was brilliant.  My writing skills have obviously changed, and that's probably for the best.

Anyway, if you read all the way to the end, thank you.

18 comments:

  1. As a 13 year old, you were very opinionated and idealistic. Not to be a Johnny Downer, but unity is neither good nor possible (thankfully).

    It's cool that you have kept your writings from long ago. I lost mine and I still think about it. FYI: Guard those things as if they were gold.

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  2. That is cool that you saved that, and this is pretty insightful for a 13 year old! Isn't it interesting how the world is still striving for unity, now more than ever it seems

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  3. I love this: On my travels over the years, I have learned much about myself that I never knew before.

    It sounds more like something a 60 year old would say, not a 13 year old. But then again, maybe you had those life experiences by 13. What do I know. :)

    I have to admit though, it is very deep for 13. These things are so fun to read.

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  4. Seriously? You were so much smarter than I was at 13. This is "old soul" material. And unedited? I am in awe. Thanks for participating!

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  5. While looking through my teenage writing, I found an essay I'd written on Animal Rights. At the time, I thought it was brilliant. Now, not so much. But it wasn't anywhere near as well done as your essay.

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  6. Isn't it funny how at 13 we view ourselves as all powerful in our writing. I like the idea even if it is idealistic. For a 13-year0old this is pretty great :)

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  7. Oh my word, this is delightful! I love that when we're teenagers we think we have everything figured out, even the big mysteries of the universe. I'm impressed by your 13 yo abilities, though. Thanks for sharing and taking part in the blog hop!!

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  8. Wow, I am really impressed that you wrote this at 13. It is beautiful! You must have been an awesome kid.

    Andrea

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  9. That is very impressive for a 13 year old. I don't think I really kept anything from that long ago and my old diary shall never be opened. It's too embarrassing. Yikes. Good job Laura!

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  10. I love how you asked us what we thought, and then told us what to think. Also - your 'travels over the years' must've been extensive at 13. ;)
    Your definition for 'universe' as one song is totally cool.

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  11. Most impressive loved and enjoyed the read.

    Yvonne.

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  12. You know, I still think it's pretty brilliant. Your thirteen year-old self should be proud. :)

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  13. Hey, it's pretty brilliant writing. There's no way I could ever write something like that. And the "travels over the years" at 13 was pretty cute. :)

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  14. I've always loved the word 'pulchritude' and am impressed you busted it out at 13. *tips hat in your direction*

    Reading this just solidifies what I've long suspected - I was a very shallow teen. :-)

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  15. This is pretty amazing for 13. I love that universe means "one song". Lovely sentiment.

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  16. I like it. :) Did you ever read the Betsy-Tacy books? I remember finding the word "pulchritude" there when I was about eleven, and I was thrilled.

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  17. I found that lovely, not only in sentiment, but in style. Some adults could've learned a fair bit about writing from your 13 year old self. :-)
    Some Dark Romantic

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